Michaela Coel Dedicates Her Emmy Win To Sexual Assault Survivors

After winning an Emmy, Michaela Coel made a short but powerful speech to survivors of sexual assault.

Credit: Cliff Lipson (Getty Images)

Michaela Coel has just won her first Emmy for “Outstanding Writing for a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie” for her work on the HBO show I May Destroy You. While her acceptance speech was brief, she had this to say:

“Write the tale that scares you, that makes you feel uncertain, that isn’t comfortable. I dare you. In a world that entices us to browse the lives of others to help us better determine how we feel about ourselves, and to, in turn, feel the need to be constantly visible — for visibility, these days, seems to somehow equate to success — do not be afraid to disappear. From it, from us, for a while. And see what comes to you in the silence.”

After saying her thank yous to several artists that helped her on her journey, Coel then “dedicate[d] this story to every single survivor of sexual assault.”

I May Destroy You is a series that follows Arabella (Michaela Coel) who was sexually assaulted after her drink was spiked at a club. While the series follows a fictional story, the experiences and themes are personal to Coel, as she herself was assaulted. The incident happened in 2018, while she was writing for the second season of Chewing Gum. She told NPR that “In many ways, Arabella’s story … is very similar to mine, but there are differences that I’ve intentionally kept so there’s always a distinction between myself and Arabella”.

Coel has talked in great detail about how I may Destroy You was created to explore the themes of sexual consent, and how it can affect one’s personal and social lifestyle. “What better place for a story than one that I felt many people could find an identification in?”

Subscribe to FIB’s Weekly Breaking News Report for your weekly dose of music, fashion and pop culture news!